All Jacked Up

Ok, so maybe you are bored with this whole theme of my house repairs.  But really, as expensive as it is, I feel like I need to say a lot more about it.  We got a tremendous amount of work done yesterday.  By “we” I mean the workers, though I was exhausted at the end of the day from “supervising” them.  They got the piers installed and raised the house to close the cracks.  It is also guaranteed not to move again.  I am pretty sure it is stable now.  As they were driving the piers into the ground, they quickly hit solid rock underneath.  You see, the piers are 2 inch (I guess) solid hardened steel bars.  They have a huge drill attachment for a backhoe they use to twist them down into the ground.  So, they started turning the screws and they stopped when they started to corkscrew the piers.  Holy cow!  They twisted huge steel rods!  Anyhow, they said when the piers start to corkscrew, they know they hit solid rock and they stop turning.

(a helical pier)

(driving a helical pier)


Once driven, they add additional hardware to the piers and use a pump and special jacks to apply 3000 psi to the piers.  That, of course, lifts the house.  Once lifted, they tighten the hardware and we’re done!It was very impressive and I’d say the workers earned every penny they made.

(The jacks to lift the house)

(Pumping the jacks to lift the house)

(Applying pressure)

While the piers were being installed, another group was around back digging a huge ditch to install water proofing and gravel to help it drain.  Before the drain, water seeped into the basement during rain storms.  That’s really not a pleasant thing so we decided to get it fixed.  The backhoe operator dug down to the footer which was 7 feet below grade.  Another poor fella named “Tiny” (I kid you not) had to crawl down in the ditch and make sure everything went smoothly.  So the ditch is 30-40 feet long as it crosses the back of the house and continues to the front of the house.  It’s a massive hole and has left a tremendous amount of dirt all over in my yard.  The really awesome thing about it is that we won’t have to mow until next spring!

(My Ditch…and Tiny)

At the end of the day as they were completing the ditch, the backhoe operator hit the water line going into my house.  In fact, he yanked it plum out of the wall of my house.  It was very impressive.  Luckily, we know a really excellent plumber so he had us wet again in an hour.

Things continue today so we’ll see what happens next.  Still, the guys from United Structural Systems seem to be doing a bang-up job!

13 thoughts on “All Jacked Up

  1. Wow! That looks like a lot of work. Good thing you are the supervisor :). Those sort of projects always make me worry something else is going to break. Well, I hope it goes well for you.

  2. I just hope they can get it done today – but I’m not betting on it. We just have the kind of luck that if something can go wrong (and it is expensive) it will. Oh well – at least my house won’t slide down the hill anymore 🙂

  3. It seems like I remember having a day job….hmmm…

    Actually, I have been super busy with the day job too. I got a ton done esp Wed and Thurs!

  4. And by “bang up job” Warren’s referring to the fact that the guys rolled a huge rock down the hill right into the side of my car!

  5. I’m just amazed by the whole process. Unbelivable that they can acutally jack up the house-wow.

    Congrats to you and your wife on the anniversary.
    .-= tipper´s last blog ..Squash Relish =-.

  6. Neat to read the process!

    Also seething quietly in even as I look upon your soil. You have actual soil. We grow rocks here.

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